Novak Djokovic Gets His Revenge, Brushes Aside Cecchinato In Shanghai - UBITENNIS
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Novak Djokovic Gets His Revenge, Brushes Aside Cecchinato In Shanghai

The Serbian is gaining momentum in China as he chases after his fourth title of 2018.

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World No.3 Novak Djokovic has extended his winning streak on the tour to 15 matches after defeating Italy’s Marcos Cecchinato 6-4, 6-0, in the third round of the Rolex Shanghai Masters.

 

The three-time champion overcame a tentative start with a clinical display against his opponent. During the 69-minute match, Djokovic hit 20 winners to 11 unforced errors and broke Cecchinato four times. Recording his 42nd win of the season.

“He fights for every ball. We were both feeling the tension. But the second set was perfect.” Djokovic said afterwards.

Thursday’s encounter was a chance for Djokovic to avenge his loss to Cecchinato in the quarter-finals of the French Open. Since that clash, the Serbian has gone on to win 27 out of 29 matches player on the tour. Furthermore, Djokovic entered the match with 527 wins on a hard court. A stark contrast to his rivals tally of just four.

It was clear how much the victory meant for the 31-year-old. Three games in, Djokovic slammed his racket onto the ground out of frustration after failing to convert a duo of break points. Prompting the umpire to have words with him. Despite Djokovic’s fiery mood, his consistency and power proved too much for an error-stricken Cecchinato. At 3-3, back-to-back mistakes from the world No.21 elevated Djokovic to a break for a 4-3 lead. Firmly in the driving seat, the second seed eased his way to clinching the opener. Hitting an ace for trio of set points, before converting his second with the help another speedy serve out wide.

After grabbing the opening set, Djokovic charged towards the finish line. The defensive play by the Serbian draw more errors from his rival as he dictated almost all of the rallies. Prompting Cecchinato to rapidly fade away. A one-sided second set saw Djokovic win 27 out of 37 points played.

Djokovic’s reward will be a showdown against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson. Seventh seed Anderson dismissed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 7-6(1). The upcoming match will be the eighth meeting between the two with Djokovic leading their head-to-head 6-1. His sole loss to Anderson was at the 2008 Miami Masters.

Zverev to clash with Edmund

Earlier in the day, German world No.5 Alexander Zverev swept aside Australian No.1 Alex de Minaur 6-4, 6-1. Zverev, who previously failed to reach the quarter-finals at his past three tournaments, dropped just six points behind his first serve as he broke de Minaur three times.

“I though I played well from start to finish, like yesterday.” Zverev told atpworldtour.com.  “I’ve played two tough opponents and the draw doesn’t get any easier from here. I’m definitely happy with the match today, especially during the first set.”

Zverev has now won 48 matches on the tour this season. The joint-highest amount on the tour with Dominic Thiem. He will next take on Great Britain’s Kyle Edmund in Shanghai. Edmund battled past Nicolas Jarry 7-6(5), 6-3, in his match. Should Zverev defeat Edmund, he would secure his place at the ATP World Tour Finals for a second year in a row.

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Pierre Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut claim their first ATP Finals title in London

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The French team formed by Pierre Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut claimed their first men’s doubles title with a 6-3 6-4 win over Raven Klaasen and Michael Venus in 70 minutes at the ATP Finals at the O2 Arena in London ending the 2019 ATP season on a high note with back-to-back titles in Paris Bercy and London. They remained unbeaten during the whole week at the ATP Finals in London winning all five matches in straight sets.

 

Herbert and Mahut fended off all four break points they faced scoring their ninth consecutive match win. The French doubles specialists have become the first team to win the doubles ATP Finals title without dropping a set since Jean Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau in 2015.

Herbert and Mahut fended off break points in the third game of the match before earning the only break of the opening set in the next game. The Frenchmen saved a break point in the sixth game before breaking serve in the seventh game.

They have become the French team to win the ATP Finals doubles title since Michael Llodra and Fabrice Santoro, who triumphed in Shanghai in 2005.

Herbert and Mahut have won 15 doubles titles as a team during their career. This year they became the eighth men’s doubles team to complete the career Grand Slam at last January’s Australian Open and also won the Rolex Paris Masters in front of their home fans.

Last year they came within one point of winning the ATP Finals title against Mike Bryan and Jack Sock after holding a match point.

“Thank you Nicolas for sharing the court, for having so much enjoyable moments and giving me so much joy, when I am with you on the court. You played an unbelievable final, so thank you for that”, said Pierre Hugues Herbert.

 

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Jannik Sinner wins his third ATP Challenger in Ortisei

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Jannik Sinner won the ATP Challenger in Ortisei adding another title to his impressive collection of trophies he lifted during a memorable 2019 season.

 

The 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals champion beat world number 173 Sebastian Ofner from Austria 6-2 6-4 in 1 hour and 6 minutes in the final of the Sparkasse Challenger Val Gardena Sudtirol at the Tennis Center in Ortisei.

Sinner won his third ATP Challenger title in 2019 after his previous wins in Bergamo and Lexington. He also reached the final in Ostrava. During the tournament the 18-year-old player from San Candido beat Lucas Miedler in the first round, Roberto Marcora in the second round, Federico gaio in the quarter final and Antoine Hoang in the semifinal without dropping a set.

Sinner will improve his ranking to his career-high at world number 78 in the ATP Ranking becoming the sixth best ranked Italian player after Matteo Berrettini, Fabio Fognini, Lorenzo Sonego, Marco Cecchinato and Andreas Seppi.

Sinner broke serve in the fifth game of the opening set to take a 3-2 lead. Ofner missed two game points in the seventh game. The Austrian player faced another break point after his third double fault. In the next game Sinner saved the first break point he faced. Sinner closed out the first set 6-2 after two backhand errors from Ofner in the eighth game.

Sinner went up a break to open up a 2-0 lead, but Ofner broke back in the fourth game and held on his serve to take a 3-2 lead. Ofner saved three break points in the seventh game to take a 4-3. Sinner converted his fourth break point in the ninth game to take a 5-4 lead and served out the win with two consecutive aces.

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Tomas Berdych: It Is Up To Others To Decide My Legacy

The former top-10 player spoke with reporters for the first time since officially retiring from the sport

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Tomer Berdych (far left) among group of recently retired player's attending special presentation at The 2019 ATP Finals

LONDON: Tomas Berdych has said his future plans is ‘to not have a plan’ after officially retiring from tennis on Saturday at the age of 34.

 

The former Wimbledon runner-up joined a series of other former players to celebrate their careers in a special on-court presentation at the ATP Finals. Also present was Radek Stepanek and David Ferrer. News of Berdych’s decision to walk away from the sport surfaced earlier this week after a Czech newspaper spoke with his father Martin.

Speculation has mounted in recent months about Berdych’s future in the sport after struggles with injury issues concerning his back and hip. He hasn’t played on the tour since the US Open. Overall, he has only managed to play 22 matches this season. Winning 13 of them.

“I was able to train, practice, prepare, and then you get to the tournament, and then I play three games, the problem came back.” Berdych explained during a press conference about his decision.
“You put all the negative stuff on the one side, and then the positive is to go on court, fight, win the match, and there was no chance to achieve that. There is really no point to continue.”

Playing in the shadows on the Big Four contingent, the Czech still managed to establish himself as a household name. Albeit on a smaller scale. As of this week, he is ranked as the 11th highest-earning player on the ATP Tour in history with more than $29 million in prize money. His achievements include winning 13 ATP titles and spending 794 consecutive weeks in the top 100. At his peak, he was fourth in the world rankings and finished seven seasons inside the top 10.

Like any other player, it hasn’t always been a smooth journey for Berdych. One example was during the 2012 Australian Open where he was booed off the court after defeating Nicolas Almagro during what was a bad-tempered encounter. However, fortunately, most of his career has been free from controversy.

“Do I have any regrets? No, I think even the bad things or the negative experience that I went through or I experienced or I have done, I think they were there for the reason. I think without them, I wouldn’t be as good as I was.” Berdych stated.
“I think even the bad ones were there for a reason.”

Now he has stepped away from the sport for good, what does the future have in store? According to the Czech, he is in no intention of rushing into anything else soon. Although he admits that it may not be tennis-related.

“The plan is actually not to have any plans. The last 15, 20 years was so hectic and so demanding that I just need to just to breathe out easily after all those years.”

As the chapter closes on the career of one of the Czech Republic’s most successful male players in the Open Era, he leaves the sport with high respect from both his fans and fellow rivals. As for his legacy, he says that it is not for him to decide.

“I think I’m not the correct one to judge that. I was trying to do the best I possibly can, and I think this is something that you created with your achievement and with your behavior.” He concludes.

Berdych’s career in numbers

2 – number of Davis Cup titles won
4 – highest ATP ranking achieved
13– number of ATP titles
53 – number of wins over top 10 players
342 – number of losses on the ATP Tour
640 – number of wins on the ATP Tour
2002 – the year he turned pro
2019 – the year he retired
29,491,328 – career prize money (in US dollars)

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